Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Fred, a 26-year-old student-athlete, needed to buy a new pair of shoes to wear to his best friend's wedding. He visited "The Shoe Palace," a store owned by Shoes, Inc. | WriteDen

Fred, a 26-year-old student-athlete, needed to buy a new pair of shoes to wear to his best friend’s wedding. He visited “The Shoe Palace,” a store owned by Shoes, Inc.

Fred, a 26-year-old student-athlete, needed to buy a new pair of shoes to wear to his best friend’s wedding.  He visited “The Shoe Palace,” a store owned by Shoes, Inc.

 

The Shoe Palace operates out of a huge warehouse-style location in California with dozens of aisles filled with shoes of all different varieties.  The store sells hundreds of styles of dress shoes, athletic shoes, casual footwear, children’s shoes, and so on.  The floors are concrete, and the store has dozens of benches on which customers may sit when trying on shoes.  Each aisle is lined with shelves displaying shoes.  Boxes containing shoes are stacked underneath the displays.  This allows customers to pull boxes from the stack to try on a pair of shoes for the right fit without assistance from a store employee.

Fred sat down on a bench in an aisle and tried on a pair of black lace-up dress shoes.  Fred admired the shoes and thought they would look great with the tuxedo he would wear to his friend’s wedding.  However, Fred wanted to take a few steps while wearing the shoes to confirm that the shoes did not hurt his feet before buying them.  He also wanted to see how they looked in a mirror.

 

Fred stood up and took a few steps backwards to get a better view of the shoes in a nearby mirror.  On his fifth step backwards, Fred tripped on a large red box of Nike basketball shoes that had been sitting in the middle of the aisle.  Tom fell to his left and bumped his left shoulder on a shelving unit before falling completely to the ground.  Four years earlier, Fred had very seriously injured his left shoulder at football practice.  Although the impact between the shelf and Fred’s shoulder was not particularly forceful, and the impact would have caused no injury at all to most people, Fred immediately suffered a shoulder fracture which caused excruciating pain.  Fortunately, however, Fred’s did not hit his shoulder when he fell to the ground.  While Fred was writhing in pain on the ground, a nearby patron walked past him, took both his wallet (which contained $500 in cash) and his brand-new iPhone 14 that he left sitting on the bench when he stood up to test his new shoes, and walked out of the store.

 

 

 

Seconds later, a store employee came running over to help Fred.  The employee immediately called an ambulance, which arrived about nine minutes later.  Fred was taken by ambulance to a hospital.  Unfortunately, medical personnel at the hospital placed the wrong bracelet on Fred’s wrist, which caused a surgeon to remove his left kidney under the mistaken understanding that Fred was a kidney donor.  Shortly thereafter, the doctor realized the mistake and proceed to repair Fred’s fractured shoulder.

 

 

 

Fred sued Shoe, Inc. for negligence.  Fred asserted that Shoe, Inc., was responsible for the injury to his shoulder, for the loss of his wallet and iPhone, and for the loss of his kidney.  The evidence in the case will show that (1) the red box on which Fred tripped had been in the aisle for at least 18 minutes, (2) the box was not concealed in any way, and (3) fifteen customers in the year before Fred was injured reported to store employees that a thief in the store had stolen their personal property while they were trying on shoes, but the store made no changes to its standard security measures.

 

 

 

Analyze (1) whether Fred is likely to succeed on his negligence claim against Shoe, Inc. and, if so, for which specific losses it is likely to be held liable (i.e., Fred’s shoulder injury, personal property, and/or lost kidney), (2) which defenses, if any, Shoe might be able to successfully assert to reduce or eliminate liability.

 

 

 

(Hints: You should talk about each element of the tort of negligence, even if only briefly, and discuss any related legal issues that Fred’s situation raises.  You are free to make reasonable assumptions about facts that are not mentioned if you feel that those assumptions are needed for the analysis.  Do not address any tort claims that Fred might have against the medical personnel or the individual who stole his property at Shoe Palace.  He is only suing Shoe, Inc.)

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